Our History



Over 95 years of Fraternal Service

THE STORY OF THE EAGLES is a story of fraternal crusading.

"There is something about the Fraternal Order of Eagles that is different, distinctive, something not to be found in any other Order," an Indiana governor once observed. Other fraternal orders promote good fellowship, do good deeds, provide death payments or provide other benefits for their members, but the Eagles go further than that. They reach outside their own ranks to fight for the welfare of all.

Since February of 1898, when the Order was founded by six theater owners in a Seattle waterfront shipyard, the Eagles not only welcomed the average man as a member, but fought for his right to a life of dignity and self-respect. To call the roll of early Eagle crusades -- for Workmen's Compensation Act, Mother's Pensions, Old Age Pensions and Social Security Laws - is to know what the Hoosier Congressman Louis Ludlow had in mind when he said of the Order, "It reaches out and tries to help in solving the distressing and difficult problems of human relief."

As the late Franklin D. Roosevelt suggested they be, Eagles' crusades are continuing.

"The pen I am presenting to the order is a symbol of my approval of the Fraternity's vision and courage," said Roosevelt when he signed the Social Security Act on Aug. 14, 1935, and gave the pen he used to the Eagles. "May its possession inspire your members to rededicate their efforts and those of the fraternity to the insuring of such economic and political conditions as well being a greater degree of happiness to our people."

February 6 -- the anniversary of the founding of the Eagles -- is a road marker, pointing the way to the future as well as commemorating the progress that we have made. To Eagle programs for Old Age Security, Cancer Research, Youth Guidance and Inter-Faith Brotherhood must be added resolute Eagle support for making democracy work and helping freedom ‘ring round the world. For Eagledom, more than anything else, is a dream -- the dream that ordinary men and women everywhere are entitled to and shall enjoy the right to life, to liberty and to the pursuit of happiness with some reasonable chance of catching up to it in their lifetimes.

Fraternal Order of Eagles Milestone of Eagle Progress

1898 -- Order was founded on Feb. 6 in Seattle
1900 -- Sponsored America's first Workmen's Compensation Law
1910 -- Sponsored America's first Mother's Pension Law
1923 -- Sponsored America's first Old Age Pension Law
1935 -- Supported enactment of Social Security Law
1942 -- Built Eagle Dormitory at Boy's Town in Nebraska
1944 -- Established the Eagles Memorial Foundation
1950 -- Completed the Chapel of the Four Chaplains
1953 -- Founded the Eagle Haus in Free Berlin, Germany
1957 -- Inaugurated nationwide "Jobs After Forty" program
1958 -- Established the Eagle House Trade School in Naples, Italy
1959 -- Built "Eagle Hall" at Home on the Range, Sentinel-Butte, North Dakota
1960 -- Established "Eagles Max Baer Heart Fund" for coronary research
1961 -- Dedication of Eagle Village, Bradenton, Florida, low rental housing project
1962 -- Establishment of Eagle House at Abadan, Iran
1963 -- Establishment of Eagle House at Nuevo Lardeo, Mexico
1965 -- Establishment of Eagle House at Tunis, Tunisania
1966 -- Establishment of Ralph Bird Memorial Library at Eagle Village
1967 -- Establishment of Eagles Jimmy Durante Children's Fund
1968 -- U.S. Congress passes the Eagles' Jobs After Forty legislation
1968 -- Establishment of Eagle House at Colombia, South America
1969 -- Establishment of Eagle House in the Philippine Islands
1970 -- Establishment of Eagle Ridge Village, Topeka, Kansas
1971 -- Establishment of Max Schroeder Eagle House in South Korea
1972 -- Established Golden Eagle Fund
1973 -- Order celebrates 75th anniversary
1974 -- Established Jimmy Durante Eagle House at Managua, Nicaragua
1975 -- Initiated "Blow the Whistle on Crime" program
1976 -- Instituted First European Aerie
1977 -- Established Eagle care Virginia Turner Memorial Center in Guatemala
1978 -- Established Hubert H. Humphry Eagle's CARE School in Honduras
1979 -- First telethon for Hughen School for Children, Port Arthur, Texas
1980 -- Eagles' Bob Hope High School dedicated at Hughen School, Port Arthur, Texas
1981 -- Terry Fitzpatrick Firehouse at Alliance, Nebraska
1982 -- Frank Goffio CARE Center, Chile
1983 -- Eagles to the Rescue in Poland
1984 -- Feed the Hungry in Africa
1985 -- Eagle's Anti-Child Abuse Program
1986 -- Alzheimer's Disease and illicit drugs

1987 -- Eagles - CARE Drive to help poor in Belize

1988 -- Matching Grant program to Aeries sponsoring Drug Education Seminars

1989 -- Eagles launch Petition Drive to make desecration of American Flag a Federal Crime

1990 -- Memorial Foundation increases Educational Grants

1991 -- Eagle Drive for support of our military in Operation Desert Storm with mail and food

1992 -- Eagles launch fund to aid Florida Hurricane Andrew victims

1993 -- Eagles launch fund to help Midwest Floor Victims

1994 -- Eagles Donor Fund established

1995 -- Eagles donates $50,000 for the Eagle Alcove of the F.D.R. Memorial

1996 -- Dedicated the FOE Memorial Plaque to honor those who lost their lives in WW II

1998 -- $1,000,000 given to charities at Grand Aerie Convention

1999 -- Establish the H.O.M.E. Fund and G.R.E.A.T. Program